Four BBC channels to leave Foxtel and Binge

Fetch TV

Plus: Fetch TV and BBC Studios extend multi-channel partnership.

Four BBC channels – BBC Earth, BBC First, BBC News, and CBeebies – will leave Foxtel and Binge from 31 July. 

The new multi-year deal will see BBC UKTV on Foxtel however, meaning audiences will be able to access Midsomer Murders, Coronation Street, EastEnders, Emmerdale, 8 out of 10 Cats Does Countdown, and Father Brown on the streaming service.

A Foxtel Group spokesperson said the group “Regularly review the content mix across our platforms and work with our content partners to reduce content duplication and ensure we are providing our customers a selection of quality content across multiple genres based on their preferences.

“Audiences will still be able to access world-class British drama and entertainment through our partnerships with Sky Studios, ITV, NBC Universal, Warner Bros. Discovery and the ABC, while Sky News UK will continue to keep Australian audiences up to date with the latest from the region.”

A BBC Studios spokesperson said the network “has ambitious plans for its brands and content in Australia” and that “Australia is a growth region for BBC Studios with a large appetite for our content.

“BritBox and give us our own platforms for growth. As we recently announced, BBC News livestream will be available on shortly, showcasing the potential of our new digital products.”

The spokesperson added that BBC Studios will “continue to work with a number of broadcasters and platforms and are in discussions to bring our content to audiences in new ways.”

The news comes as Fetch TV and BBC Studios extend their channel partnership agreement covering six BBC channels.

The deal ensures Fetch subscribers’ ongoing access to BBC content available on any Australian aggregation platform covering existing brands BBC UKTV, BBC Earth, CBeebies, BBC Kids and BBC Brit, and BBC Drama.

The channels will sit alongside BBC News and Britbox which continue to be available on Fetch.

Sam Hall, chief content and commercial officer of Fetch TV, said: “We are excited to renew our long-standing channels partnership with BBC Studios and to introduce the new BBC Drama channel which, as a replacement for BBC First, will expand the line-up of premium drama programming available on Fetch.

“Iconic BBC channel brands, along with much loved shows including Call the Midwife, Death in Paradise and Silent Witness are important elements of the Fetch customer offering.

“This deal demonstrates that Fetch remains committed to offering a true aggregation model across a very broad range of content options including Free-to-Air, FAST and subscription channels, free and subscription streaming services, transactional video on-demand, and pay-per-view events.”    

BBC Drama, a new channel available only on Fetch, will be home to shows such as Death in Paradise, Call The Midwife and Silent Witness, BAFTA award-winning The Sixth Commandment, Happy Valley and Unforgotten.

Fetch subscribers can view the BBC channels on their TV or on the Fetch Mobi app, with a “start over” option available for the majority of programmes which enables viewers to join the channel at any point and watch from the start.

Subscribers can also access on-demand channel content from the Fetch Catch-Up menu.

“Australian audiences love our shows and with our BBC brands, they know exactly where to find the best British curated content, from drama, documentaries, entertainment and children’s programming to world-class independent journalism,” Fiona Lang, general manager, BBC Studios Australia and New Zealand, said.

“Fetch is a long-standing and valuable partner and we are delighted to be able to deliver them a package of linear and virtual playlist channels that meets the demands of their audiences.”

The BBC channels are all available in the 46 channel Fetch Ultimate Pack for $20 per month, and also in the $6 per month Fetch Channel Packs.

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